In two weeks our newest racetrack with slots opens 5 mins from my front door and in the summer of 2002 we get another Charity casino.
OLGC Starts Construction and Unveils Design Plans for Thousand Islands Charity Casino
The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLGC) today held a ceremonial groundbreaking for the Thousand Islands Charity Casino. Further to the Ontario Government's commitment of last year to establish a charity casino in Eastern Ontario, construction will now begin with a planned opening in Summer 2002. The entertainment centre will feature a Thousand Islands regional theme, highlighting the various nautical, architectural and geographical characteristics of the region.
"This exciting $54 million construction project will boost tourism and economic development in the Thousand Islands and create 400 new direct jobs," said the Honourable Robert Runciman, MPP, Leeds-Grenville. "Revenues from the new charity casino will flow to the $100 million annual guaranteed fund for deserving charities here and across Ontario."
"Our goal is for this entertainment centre to complement the tourism appeal of the Thousand Islands area and become a tourism landmark in its own right," said Ron D. Barbaro, OLGC Chair and CEO, while presenting the casino's theming and design. "By choosing a Thousand Islands regional theme, we have positioned the charity casino as a celebration of this unique tourism destination."
A key highlight of the interior design is the Jewels of the St. Lawrence wall featuring a graphically stylized "map" of the region's islands etched onto edge-lit, full-height glass panels presented as an ever-changing, kinetic light sculpture. Other highlights include: ceiling features reminiscent of ships' masts and sails against the sky; the restaurant's fašade which is evocative of the detailing on antique wooden yachts and the restaurant's interior, which is filled with murals that create the ambiance of a marina club.
The Honourable Robert Runciman, MPP, Leeds-Grenville and Ron D. Barbaro, joined by Leeds and Thousand Islands Reeve Harold Grier and Gananoque Mayor Sylvia Fletcher-Thomas, planted a tree to commemorate the start of construction and to signify the close partnership between the Province and the municipalities.
As part of its commitment to deliver gaming entertainment in a socially responsible manner, the Ontario Government has allocated two per cent of the annual gross revenue from slot machines at charity casinos and slot facilities at racetracks - with a guaranteed minimum of $10 million annually - to the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care for problem gambling prevention, research, and treatment. This is more than any jurisdiction in North America. Based on this two per cent formula, the amount for fiscal 2001/2002 is estimated at $21 million.